The Voices of Martyrs – A Review Round Up

Do reviews help when you’re trying to decide whether to purchase a book? Let’s see what you think after these:

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Publishers Weekly
The lush, descriptive prose tantalizes all the senses, drawing the reader into a rich world spanning both miles and centuries. Hints of magic in both the past and present, as well as the science fiction elements of the future stories, make this an exciting exploration of genre as well as culture.
[read the full review]

File 770
This isn’t a collection to be rushed through; it’s best savored more slowly and thoughtfully. But read it you definitely should. Highly recommended.
[read the full review]

Reading and Gaming for Justice
I found myself reflecting on these stories following the weeks I finished the final story. Each story is dense and brings its own message and feeling. Each story made me stop and think. This is not a a short story collection to read in one sitting but one to string out and enjoy each individual story, each individual voice.
[read the full review]

Crittermom (GoodReads)
The Voices of Martyrs is an incredible, eloquently written anthology and I highly recommend it. 5 / 5
[read the full review]

Foreword Reviews
Most refreshing is that nowhere in The Voices of Martyrs does Broaddus present a stereotype or predictable trope; there’s a clear sense that he’s having fun writing what he wants to, and that readers are just hitching a ride on the roller-coaster of his imagination until the ride stops, or they fall off.
[read the full review here]

No*Con?

TL;DR – The weekend of May 6-7th, the Broaddus family would love to host folks to just hang out at our house all weekend. If writerly folks wanted to stay at a nearby hotel* and if they wanted to drop by the house, they would be welcome. No pressure. No planning. No*Con.**

Many people have asked whether or not I’d bring back Mo*Con. The reality was that the planning (and stress) of Mo*Con ate up the first quarter of my year. I increasingly wasn’t able to attend cons nor get much writing done. Despite whatever Mandela effect we may be experiencing, 2016 was actually the only year we’ve not done Mo*Con. I was able to attend a few more cons, including Confusion a couple weeks ago. Last year, I wrote over a half dozen stories by June. So, short answer, no.

BUT … I do miss folks.

At a few cons, several folks (especially looking at you Anton Cancre and Sarah Hans) kept whispering in my ear like a devil and angel on each shoulder. They posed a simple hypothetical: would I be willin to just open up my home and be willing to have folks come by and hang out. The same kind of conversations could happen, since, frankly, “the best part of Mo*Con was hanging out in your garage.”***

So the first weekend in May, the 6-7th (coincidentally when we usually would host Mo*Con), the Broaddus family will be home, braced and ready for company. We’ll enjoy food, drinks, and conversation. Meals we’ll do by a combination of pitch in and on site cooking (if folks want to paypal-ing me in advance, we can cater a meal or two).

One more time, the weekend of May 6-7th, the Broaddus family would love to host folks just hanging out at our house all weekend. If writerly folks wanted to stay at a nearby hotel and if they wanted to drop by the house, they would be welcome. No pressure. No planning. No*Con.

Drop me a line if you have any questions (or to let us know that you’re coming).

*I don’t care if folks decide they want to just camp out in our backyard. However, if you wanted to stay at this hotel, we’ve secured discounted rates:

Wingate by Wyndham Northwest
6240 Intech Commons Dr.
Indianapolis, IN 46278
P: 317/275-7000 C: 317/752-2312
web: www.wingateindianapolis.com
DISCOUNT CODE: CGMWC4

**Lee Harris was the first to call it that. Faux*Con was a close second.
***When the history of my contribution to the genre is written, let it be about my garage.

My Favorite Bit: Maurice Broaddus talks about THE VOICES OF MARTYRS

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My collection, The Voices of Martyrs, represents nearly a ten year span of my writing career. I wanted to wait until I had enough stories published before I began to choose stories for a collection. I noticed that my stories could be very easily grouped into tales from the Past, tales from the Present, and tales from the Future. It opens with a story set in ancient Africa and closes with one set on a colony in the far reaches of space. It’s a little known fact that for a long time my working title for this collection was “Black to the Future.”

But my absolute favorite bit is … [continue reading on Mary Robinette Kowal’s site]

Ten Authors on the ‘Hard’ vs. ‘Soft’ Science Fiction Debate

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In the wake of big-screen success stories like The Martian and Star Wars: The Force Awakens, debates about whether one movie or another is scientific enough have been cropping up in various corners of the internet. Is a deeper, harder line being drawn in the sand about “hard” science fiction than usual? Or are we discovering that perhaps there’s a whole lot more sand available with regards to how imaginative and future-looking fiction can develop, and even entertaining the possibility that these developments could become blueprints for future-fact?

I asked ten science fiction authors [NOTE FROM MAURICE: SPOILERS ... I'M ONE OF THE TEN!] about their definitions of “hard” and “soft” science fiction, and how they see science fiction (hard, soft, and otherwise) in today’s terms. They returned with ten fascinating—and not surprisingly, entirely different—answers.

[Head over to Ten Authors on the ‘Hard’ vs. ‘Soft’ Science Fiction Debate]

Afronauts Podcast

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I was a guest over on the Afronauts podcast. I should warn you: 1) I was supposed to be there to promote my collection, The Voices of Martyrs, and 2) I suck at promotion. My 30 minute appearance (beginning at the 1:07 mark) went way off the rails as we went down the rabbit hole of comic books and movies. It was a great convo and I look forward to being back on their show!

[Head over to the Afronauts podcast]

Rejections: The Building Blocks of Collections

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I’m guest blogging over on the Ragnarok Publications blog….

Short stories are my first love. As much as I enjoy writing novels and novellas, I keep coming back to short stories. That’s why my first collection, The Voices of Martyrs, means so much to me. But as I’ve reflected on the long journey in getting here, I keep coming back to one thought: rejections are a part of a writer’s life.

Dear White Evangelicals – I Need You To Do Better | Maurice Broaddus

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White Evangelicals, I need you to do better.

Watching so many of my fellow Christians so fervently support the rise of President Trump gave me pause and served to broaden the disconnect I feel with Evangelicals. I’ve historically identified as one. But somewhere along the way, “Evangelicals” became a byword, synonymous with “American white Republican Christian,” leaving a whole lot of us behind. You should be leading the charge against injustice, intolerance, hate, and destruction of the environment – yet your silence has become your message.

[Continue reading on Mike Morrel’s blog]

Coming February 2017 … (Cover Reveal – Now with starred Publishers Weekly review!)

…my first short story collection!  (Art by Arthur Hugot)

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“The lush, descriptive prose tantalizes all the senses, drawing the reader into a rich world spanning both miles and centuries. Hints of magic in both the past and present, as well as the science fiction elements of the future stories, make this an exciting exploration of genre as well as culture.” –Publishers Weekly (Go read the full starred review)

Additional blurbs:

“Give thanks for these griot, hip-funk, afrofuturist stories of pure horror and complicated hope. Broaddus sounds a deep beat in this true myth of survival: what our heads forget, our bones remember.” –Karen Lord

“Maurice Broaddus has a talent for creating fascinating characters across lifetimes, fierce voices that linger and stay with you. His fantasies, fables, and far out tales come from an imagination as frightening as it is admirable. And whether they come from the past, present, or one of his cautionary futures, you are certain to find a story that speaks to you.” –Sheree Renée Thomas

“An outcast in the distant past struggling to survive. A religious captain rationalizing away the evil of the slave ship he commands. A future biomech warrior in a literal culture war. The stories in The Voices of Martyrs again prove why Maurice Broaddus is one of the most exciting writers of today’s genre fiction. His vision spans space and time while staying grounded in the stories–in the very voices–which make us fully and tragically and hopefully human.” –Nebula Award-nominated author, Jason Sanford

“Reminiscent of a young Charles Saunders, Maurice Broaddus’ The Voices of Martys is a fresh blend of science fiction, fantasy, and the folkloric history of the African diaspora.” –Chesya Burke, Author of Let’s Play White and The Strange Crime of Little Africa

“There’s a percussive intensity to the stories in The Voices of Martyrs. These are not simplistic heroic tales but poignant examinations of the triumphs and losses, the joys and pains, and the deep, rich complexities of a culture.” –Ayize Jama-Everett, author of The Liminal People

Buffalo Soldier’s almost here …

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It comes out in March, but in the mean time there’s:

An “Interview with MAURICE BROADDUS” (over at CivilianReader.com)

Your new novella, Buffalo Soldier, will be published by Tor.com in April 2017. It looks really interesting: How would you introduce it to a potential reader? Is it part of a series?

It’s set in the steampunk universe that I created for my story “Pimp My Airship.” In this universe, America lost the Revolutionary War and remains a colony of England. Buffalo Soldier is a stand alone sequel to my novelette, Steppin’ Razor (published in Asimov’s Magazine). Set in a Jamaica which was never a colony of England and thus flourished, an undercover agent, Desmond Coke, gets drawn into a web of political intrigue when he stumbles across a young boy, Lij. As it turns out, Lij is a clone of Haile Selassie, a messiah figure to the Rastafarians, who the government plans to raise as their puppet to control the people. Desmond frees the boy and goes on the run. In Buffalo Soldier, the pair is on the run through the United States of Albion, searching for a place to call home.

(Read the full interview here)

As a bonus, I was interviewed over on Wired: “(Daniel) Older, (Silvia) Moreno-Garcia, and (Maurice) Broaddus recently helped edit People of Colo(u)r Destroy Fantasy and People of Colo(u)r Destroy Horror, special issues of Fantasy magazine and Nightmare magazine written, edited, and illustrated by people of color.” (Read Writers of Color Continue to Wrestle With Lovecraft’s Racist Legacy)

2016 Year in Review (Eligible Stories)

Not that I expect to be nominated for any stories, but I thought it would be fun to do a roundup of my projects for the year. Interesting enough, all of my projects came out in the last quarter of the year:

At the Village Vanguard (Ruminations on Blacktopia)Mothership Zeta #5

The Spirit StoneNot Like the Rest of Us

Young, Gifted, and VentrueThe Cainite Conspiracies

Super Duper FlyUpside Down: Inverted Tropes in Storytelling (though it was a sneak preview story in Apex Magazine last year – so it’s not technically eligible for anything)

The Greatest Gift My Mother Gave Me (essay) – People of Colo(u)r Destroy Horror

 

I also has a play piece debut: John FreemanFinding Home: Indiana at 200 as well as consulted on the videogame Watchdogs 2.

 

While not a return to my blogging ways, I did post a few blog posts. Here are the top ones:

Good Mourning, America

If Only We Believed All Lives Matter

Simple Theologian

Yeah, yeah, I was hospitalized on Labor Day

 

I didn’t set any writing goals last year, but as I look ahead to 2017, my goals are to write ten short stories, a novel, and a play. And I may try my hand at writing four songs (as I was challenged by a young friend at church to do so).